5 Things That Suck When it’s Time to Sell Your Car

Shafiqah Hamdan

Shafiqah Hamdan


Buying a car is tricky. Selling a car, sometimes even trickier.

Upgrading your car is exciting. For some, a new car is a symbol of success, tangible proof that you are progressing in your life. But before you get a new one, you have to get rid of your old one. And that’s where the fun absolutely does not start, as you may have experienced with the following scenarios.

1. Lowballed at the Trade-in

Let’s start with the first bloodletting. What’s interesting of course is that everyone goes into this knowing full well that they might get completely shafted. There are many reputable and upstanding used car dealers, but the sharks among them can sense your desperation and go for the kill. The result, of course, is a lower price for your car.

Want an example? A friend of Flux recently got 8% more on a car worth about RM100,000 by selling it directly to a private customer compared to an offer by a dealer. Even then he was aware that he could have gotten more, but at this point, he just wanted to get it done.

Money talks, but convenience can sometimes yell

2. Inspection Irritation

The truth is, some of what you lose to a dealer is a form of convenience fee. They take care of the administrative nonsense, including assisting the ownership transfer and inspection.

This inspection is a necessary part of ownership transfer and a real pain in the rear. And bear in mind that ownership transfer inspections are only valid for six months, so if your potential buyer decides to ghost you and you don’t find another within that period, back to the inspection centre you go.

Stay tuned to a future blog post from us titled "100 Things to do With Your Time Instead of Wasting it at Stupid O'Clock in the Morning"

3. The Bank Remembers

Settling a loan early should be a good thing, right? Not quite.

Depending on the car that you’ve got, you could find yourself in a position where your ride has depreciated a whole lot faster than what you currently owe the bank. This means that selling your car may not be enough to cover the outstanding amount on the loan.

Plus, the way that banks sometimes structure loan repayment is that you take care of a big chunk of interest first and then pay up the principal after. In these cases, you are disproportionately paying for interest compared with your actual loan tenure.

And so, people tend to ride out the loan. Which in Malaysia is an average of seven years. Seven long years of pining and longing for the car of your dreams with growing resentment for the one you currently have. Sounds like a prison sentence, doesn’t it?

4. The Careless Conundrum

For those of wisdom and patience i.e. the heroes among us who sell their cars privately, we salute you. We also salute your next choice of car, which is that hot new mid-size crossover in bright red with the killer 19-inch rims. In fact, many others approve of your choice. Which is why they’ve gone and ordered one for themselves.

See where this is going? There is a waitlist. And you’ve already found a buyer willing to pay the price you’ve set for your outgoing car, but they want it now. Their loan has been approved, balik kampung is in two weeks and it needs a full detailing for the relatives and the ‘gram. So, of course, you sell. And now you are carless.

There are various alternatives to help you get around during this interim period of course: e-hailing, car sharing or even public transport. Each of these has benefits for sure, but nothing beats having your car with you whenever you need it

5. One's Man's Treasure

A car is an extension of your personality. You will, naturally, choose a colour or specification package that resonates with you. When it comes time to sell it, however, your individuality may cause a rude shock with regards to the resale value.

It is well-documented that certain colours and appearance choices do worse than others at the trade-in, just check out this article by What Car? The gist of it is whether you are happy to go for black, grey or white just to please the next buyer or used car dealer. Let’s answer that with a question: where is the fun in putting down your hard-earned money for the perfect car for you if it’s just going to blend in? Stand out, and you get five to seven years of satisfaction with a miserable transaction waiting at the end.

So, in essence, these things well and truly suck. But they’re a necessary part of the car buying process. But what if you tried another way? With a car subscription, there is no hire purchase loan. There is no loss suffered in a trade-in, just a simple return when the subscription is up. Inspections are done before the car is given to you, so you can subscribe with confidence.

Don’t worry about dubious usage history, because each car comes with the assurance of a clean bill of ownership and legal use. Settling a loan early because you want to switch car? Not a thing. Simply end your subscription and start a new one with a different car, or do a temporary switch — which is allowed by Flux. And forget downpayment altogether, pay monthly with no hidden charges.

If you have anything to add to this list, let us know in the responses below and check out 

to see just how much a car subscription doesn’t suck compared to selling your old car for a new one.


Subscribe to Own by Flux. The Simpler Way to Own Your Perfect Car.

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